Night of the Scorpion (1972) Movie Script

I want you to quit brooding.
C'mon it's all over.
- Honestly you should be thinking...
- Of what!?
Bringing her back life!
Why did I murder her?
I must've been insane.
But we've been over all this,
it wasn't intentional you were drunk
That doesn't make me less guilty Sarah.
You'll see, I'll do anything necessary
to help you put it out of your mind
I'll leave this house.
Oliver you wouldn't... you...
don't leave me alone.
Take me with you.
I couldn't bear to stay here without you.
You'd be a constant reminder
of what I've done.
Come on, do you really expect
to find someone else?
Someone who will help you forget
you killed your woman.
Does that seem so bloody unreasonable?
Helen is all that's kept us apart.
That's an appalling lie!
You're not talking to my father.
Yes dear father was putty in your hands.
Listen to me Oliver
Many a woman would be willing to marry the
handsome and rich young widower Oliver Bromfield
But what will happen when alcohol
seizes control of your brain again?
Come on you'd murder her as well.
Listen to me Oliver, you would I tell you!
You'd murder again!
That's enough!
I don't want to hear another word.
Well I guess that's just too bad.
Because the truth must be told.
You're an alcoholic Oliver.
Sick, like your father before you.
You might say like all the Bromfields.
And you'll stay crippled
for the rest of your life.
I'm through.
I'm leaving right now.
And when do you plan to come back?
I don't know.
It could be never.
I want you to stay.
Only I can help you.
You'll regret abandoning me!
Goodbye now, Oliver.
Are we getting near the house?
Quite near, just ahead.
Why it's just what I wished it'd be.
Not that one, it's the
house up on the hill.
You're not happy-
Practically all my life
was lived in that house.
All the Bromfields have lived in that
house for three long generations.
It's quite isolated.
About an hours hike to the nearest town.
When you go there, don't pay
any attention to the chatter.
That house there and the Bromfields
have never been very popular.
And when you were with your first
wife you lived there all the while?
Yes why?
Does that bother you?
No not at all.
You're mine now that's all that counts.
Anything wrong?
I'm a little nervous I guess.
Afraid I won't be welcomed here.
Why Sarah and Jenny will love you, I promise,
they will make you feel right at home.
Our behavior hasn't exactly been normal
Darling that's just the way it happened,
romantic as hell too.
Yes, but I still think we should have told them sooner,
given them a chance to come to the wedding.
- A few days delay wouldn't have mattered.
- To me yes
This is Sarah my late father's wife,
and this is, as you know, Ruth
I must say you've chosen very well.
Darling you don't know how
much we've missed you.
Let's hope this time it will be for good.
That'll depend on Ruth.
And Jenny, where is she?
You've forgotten what day this is.
I know only, it's a day of great joy for me.
Jenny is at the cemetery.
Today is the anniversary of Helen's death.
Thanks for the reminder Sarah.
- Oh I'm sorry, I didn't want to...
- Yes I know
Come I'll show you the house.
- I've made a bad impression on Sarah.
- Why?
I just did, you're a man you wouldn't understand...
Is she aware that I was one of your employees?
You shouldn't marry Sarah, you married me.
I know Oliver
The thing is, if we have to live here, and your
family doesn't like me, well, it will be difficult.
Who's that?
That's Jenny my sister.
She didn't see us?
Apparently not.
Nevertheless, she is rather an introvert.
And why the secret? I mean you could have told
me today was the anniversary of your wife's death.
I don't want to discuss it anymore.
Oliver, do you love me?
I'll take care of this Madam
if you wish to go.
No leave it, I'll take care of it.
And don't tell me Madam when we're alone,
We're going to be together for a long time.
- You've decided to stay here then?
- Yes why? Does that seem strange?
No, not at all.
She's pretty, who is she?
The first Mrs. Bromfield.
Very pretty.
Oliver though doesn't look very much like her.
It's... not his mother,
it's his first wife.
Then what's it doing here?
This wing was their's you see...
I cleaned this room yesterday.
Only that photo wasn't there.
Do you know who put it here?
Hmm... well... no.
Thanks Clara, if I need anything I'll call you.
You're like a little child Oliver.
I know you very well.
But I don't entirely understand you.
What are you talking about?
I think you know what I'm referring to.
You didn't even have the courage to
tell me you were marrying again.
When I married Helen you
caused a lot of difficulties.
I was right.
Ruth is different, she loves me.
But Helen also said that.
You mind if we change the subject?
Do you really think that girl can make you happy?
I don't see why not.
I seriously doubt you picked an ideal mate.
And how would you define an ideal mate?
A Lady who knows you well...
and is willing to tolerate your weaknesses.
Even cater to them.
In the year just passed, I've changed a lot Sarah.
You don't seem to recognize that.
Maybe you don't want to.
I honor you as my father's widow.
However you no longer have
any place in my private life.
You may have changed in some ways Oliver,
but deep down, you are still the same person.
I remember when I was your intimate.
But then you married Helen.
And now Ruth.
I've been in love with you for years,
you know that.
Let's not pick over old bones.
The only thing to do is forget it.
Poor Oliver, I want only what is best for you.
You know that. I'll do anything you want
me to, my darling, I always have.
- Oh, am I interrupting?
- No, I was just leaving.
This house is scary, it's too big Oliver.
You better get to like it, it's your house now.
Sarah told me you'd gone out.
It's almost an hour since I've returned.
You might've least said hello to Ruth.
I mean you knew she was here.
I had something more important to do.
I thought I told you to get rid of that picture!
Oliver, I'm not our wife!
Change your tone.
Well I see that you're still the same.
You and me.
I still can't change my
sentiments as quickly as you.
Can you be a bit clearer?
It is but a year to the day
since the death of poor Helen.
And already you brought a new wife here.
I don't mind saying that Helen's death
affected you too much.
But I'm not here to argue,
I want to introduce you to Ruth.
I'm here, send her in.
Ruth will never set foot in this room.
We'll run into each other somewhere
in this big old house.
At supper, let's say.
Oliver told us nothing about you.
It was rather a surprise you know.
Well there was nothing to tell you.
Up until a month ago I didn't
even know she existed.
You mean in just a month you
convinced him to marry you?
It was I who did the convincing,
not her.
And I tell you, it wasn't easy.
That was probably because you
didn't tell me you were a millionaire.
Well, goodnight.
I'm going to bed.
I too am tired Oliver,
it's been a very big trip.
- Goodnight.
- I'll be right along.
I must say the meal was delightful.
I need to speak with you.
What is it now?
Just a few items of business.
You've been away for a year,
and I've had to tend to the estate.
But first, a cognac.
I don't drink anymore.
Oh really? Who would have thought that little
Ruth held such power hold over our boy.
Let's talk business another day.
Ruth is waiting for me.
The past is the past Oliver, we mustn't dwell
on it. There's nothing for you to fear.
It was a great mistake to have brought you here.
The best thing for us is to go.
Are you serious? Go where?
Anyplace where we can be alone.
Whatever you want.
Why are you here Helen?
Come now weren't you waiting for a visit?
This pleases me.
Yes, your talent.
What's this Helen mummified?
I would think you know me better by now dear.
My neck is more sensual.
You'll have to re-mold the brow too.
Pretty Helen.
I'll redo the sculpture.
I'll do anything you like.
Why are you waiting?
Afraid to come near me?
Go ahead. Undress me.
I suspected you two,
but I didn't want to believe it.
Telling me I'm drunk and should go to bed,
so you could go to bed with my sister.
I put up with many of your love affairs Helen,
but this one, No!
You and your drunken hallucinations.
- Helen, Helen!
- Don't you try to touch me, you disgust me!
- You drunken bastard, do you understand?
- No, I'll show you!
- No, no Helen!
- Get out of my way!
I didn't mean to,
I didn't mean to!
Oliver, what is it? Oliver!
What happened?
You were crying out, I guess it was a nightmare.
Did I mention anyone?
What did I say?
You were quite agitated about something
you said you didn't mean to do.
I'm sorry Ruth.
Yes, Peter?
What is it you want?
You see I'm rearranging the garden...
well there are plants that were
favorites of Mrs Helen.
I wonder whether you prefer I leave them alone.
It's your business what you do in the garden.
Well it's just that you were
so fond of Mrs. Helen.
That's enough!
I don't wish to speak of her.
Please, Ms. Jenny.
You know that I too adored Mrs. Bromfield.
Me in my way,
You in yours.
What are you trying to say?
I normally retire at a late hour and
get up early, I don't miss much.
What do you now of the new
Mrs. Bromfield?
I see, but I don't talk much about what
I see, surely you'll appreciate that.
Your insinuation is a mistake.
We had normal relations.
Now leave me alone, do you understand?
Very well Ms. Jenny.
There is a great deal of work
that needs to be done.
Morning, sleep well?
Yes thanks, is it late?
Why, it's nearly half-past ten.
- Clara
- Yes maam
You seen my husband?
Well yes, he got up real
early and went for a walk.
He loves walking.
Would you say he is acting strangely?
Well I... couldn't say.
Cook has your breakfast ready,
I'll go and get it
Clara, I want you to
answer my question.
He's changed quite a lot
since the death of Mrs. Helen.
Were you present at the accident?
Not I, no!
Those dizzy spells, did
she get them often?
Spells? What spells?
Wasn't she a regular visitor to Dr. Roberts?
She had no spells, no.
I'm hungry, boiled or scrambled I'll
eat them immediately.
Come on pussy.
Now leave her Clara,
she'll keep me company.
Mrs. Bromfield, your questions
are not easy to answer.
I have to ask.
Is there any reason to fear
my husband is unbalanced?
No reason at all.
I've known him a long time, seen him
through many crisis. There's no reason to fear.
What makes you think otherwise?
Something or other has
Oliver in a state of torment.
It's nothing to worry about, you see he is
still feeling the shock of losing his first wife.
Well that's it. For some reason
he feels tremendously guilty.
What do you mean?
Doctor, tell me how she died.
I'd imagine they'd already told
you, it was a tragic accident.
As a result of a dizzy spell wasn't it?
No, Helen didn't suffer from dizzy spells.
But didn't you sign a certificate of death?
- The certificate, yes and I admit...
- Yes, please doctor!
Finish what you were going to say...
You see, it's strange to me that
Helen lost her balance and fell.
Freak accident.
- Are you sure it wasn't...
- No, not a chance.
You see the certificate of death
doesn't leave any room for doubts.
Is there anything else I can do for you?
Nothing else Doctor.
What are you doing here Ruth?
You could have asked me for a lift.
Clara said you'd gone out on your morning walk.
What did you want here?
To buy a thing or two.
But why didn't you send Clara?
I prefer to come and do it.
Perfume is a very personal thing.
Well you can return with me,
I'll send for the other car.
Let go, you're drunk.
Take your hands away.
Come back here!
Let go!
Let go You drunken pig!
I knew you'd come back.
Because you love me,
don't you Helen.
Why do you like to torture me?
And you... you do like
to torture me don't you?
There's a devil inside you Helen.
A grinning devil.
And I love it as a love you,
as I love the rest of you.
There it is, I see it in
your eyes, the devil.
But you're not Helen.
Who are you?
I must have you as my own.
I'll wait.
This morning our Ruth went into town.
Oh? I'm not interested.
Not interested in what she did there?
There's nothing that
interests me about her.
She's not of our class and the
servants she treats as equals.
Really Sarah.
You mean you're not interested in the
fact that Ruth went to see Doctor Robert?
That's right.
And it wasn't for reasons of health.
But to question, she had many questions
according to the doctor.
And what did she discover?
She learned that our Helen...
...was not given to fainting spells.
That proves nothing.
Probably you're right.
But it might bring on an investigation.
I suppose you're aware of
what it could mean for Oliver.
In my opinion you'd be in
as serious trouble as Oliver.
Why do you say that?!
He wasn't alone there, you were present too.
And you, you were some place else?
As I can well recall, you
too were there that night.
The very first thing the police
look for is a motive for the crime.
Now I hardly had a motive, ah... but you.
You know I had no
reason to murder Helen.
I loved her too much.
I believe murders are often
committed for that reason.
Hello, who's there?
Hello? This is Ruth Bromfield.
I must speak with you without delay.
Come in.
- Would you like something more?
- No thank you.
Helen was very beautiful, wasn't she?
What is it you want here?
Help me Jenny, I'm very
frightened and Oliver isn't here.
Go on, explain.
Jenny I beg you help me!
Someone is trying to kill me!
What are you saying?
I spilled milk, the cat drank it and died!
- The cat poisoned?
- Yes, it's true... come and have a look.
Help me!
- I overheard.
- Oliver!
I'll go with you.
- Someone tried to poison me I'm just sure!
- Calm yourself darling, just calm yourself.
- I'm so frightened!
- It's alright.
Now where is this cat?
He was on the floor, right there!
He was!
I tell you it wasn't a hallucination.
It's full.
What you need is some rest.
You're over tired and overrun.
Your minds playing tricks on you.
It's no hallucination, I tell you she was dead!
You've got to take nerve medicine.
There's nothing wrong with this cat.
Alright, I'll go to the doctors.
But I didn't imagine it Oliver!
Where were you a little while ago?
Downstairs drinking tea.
You were resting and I
didn't want to disturb you.
Where downstairs?
The kitchen, it's one of my favorite places.
Looking for something?
May I be of any assistance?
No, no thank you.
Feeling better Ruth?
Any other strange occurrences?
I was going to the doctor but
the car keys are missing.
Now what's this all about, you
don't need a doctor just a little rest.
About the car keys you're mistaken,
I put them there myself.
No Oliver, I looked, they are not there.
I'll go to the garage with you,
you'll find it's an error.
Another mistake dear.
But when I went the first
time they weren't there!
Come on sweetheart,
don't worry about it.
Someone else used the car.
Tell me, did you see anyone this
morning come into the garage?
No one, save for the lady.
That'll be all.
Why don't you go for a nice long walk?
You'll feel a lot better.
By the Way"-
...what were you doing in the
library with the door locked?
I entered, to get a book, there was
a breeze and the door closed.
Locked shut. Well, those odd
things will happen I guess.
Enjoy your walk.
So this is your little house.
Uncle Edward.
Oh, was so nice of you to
invite me to the wedding.
It happened so quickly!
I still can't believe it.
There were no guests,
we eloped.
Spur of the moment.
It's the only thing to do. You start
thinking about it and that's the end.
Don't talk that way uncle Edward.
Well it's true isn't it, well I'm not against
marriage, I'm just against thinking about it.
Oh this is Sarah Brumfield and
my husband Oliver.
How do you do?
We're pleased to know you.
Thank you. I just had to say goodbye to my niece,
I'm leaving the country and I don't know when I'll return.
Hope you're paying us a lengthy visit.
Only a day and a half.
My boat leaves a day after tomorrow.
You've been acting very strangely lately,
I don't believe you are at all well.
It's possible, but it could be your fault.
It's almost as though you enjoy seeing
me suffer, it's devilish.
Sometimes I feel I could...
What... what?
Go on, say it...
He loves you Helen, Oliver's
very rich that's what counts
I'm not marrying for love, I just want to
get in a part of the Bromfield's inheritance.
It just isn't fair to me.
Calm yourself darling.
Tell us of your own brother.
Don't worry, Oliver won't get in our way.
Do you think he'd permit us
to go on with our kind of love.
Screw his permission.
In this universe, nothing is eternal.
Do you recall the line that says
For richer or for poorer,
till death do us part.
Till death do us part.
Did anyone see you?
Don't worry, I know my business.
Trust your uncle Edward.
Now uh... Mrs. Brumfield.
Why didn't you call the police?
A private investigator doesn't have
anything like their kind of authority.
But how could I call the
police when there's no proof.
It's you that must procure that.
All I know is that someone is trying to kill me.
Yes, I understand your fears.
Something to send you into a drug sleep
and then air is injected into your veins.
Death, you see, occurs immediately
and without a trace.
Ah but don't you worry Mrs. Bromfield,
I'm here now and I'll protect you.
Do you know the medical history of your husband?
He hasn't been in bad health.
Your husband received intense psychiatric care.
He was treated as an alcoholic.
I found his encephalograph in the library.
True he'd erased his name, but I
managed to reconstruct it just the same.
He can't be an alcoholic, he doesn't drink.
Surely there must be another explanation.
I know it's not pleasant, but it's the truth.
Mrs. Bromfield, is there any detail that
you omitted on the telephone?
- No, I told you all I know, now you better go...
- Oh don't worry...
...I saw him just a little while ago and he
was pouring over his ledgers. However...
Are you looking for anything?
Ah yes the Kitchen, I'd like a glass of water.
I didn't want to disturb anyone, you see.
Let's quit this comedy, it's ridiculous.
I overheard your conversation with lady Ruth.
You really hate Oliver's wife, now why?
Get out of this house!
You're not wanted here.
Why you know, your lady Ruth feels
differently though. And it's she who pays.
And just what do you hope to find?
The truth of Helen's death.
It was an accident.
You don't sound so sure.
Perhaps you fear for your brother?
My brother is not a killer.
And you?
Could you honestly tell me, you
had no motive to kill her?
It wasn't I.
I see the only one left is your father's widow,
Sarah. Sarah Brumfield.
You mean you never considered that likelihood?
Wasn't she very close to Helen
when she fell over the railing?
It would have been very easy to push her.
But... what motive did she...
In love with your brother.
And for Helen, that would be a dangerous sentiment.
What do you intend to do?
I was hired to do a job
and I intend to perform it.
Oh I assure you I'll get to the truth.
And... incidentally...
...I would appreciate it if you kept
our little conversation to yourself.
I think you'll understand it's a matter
of better me here than the police.
Magnificent garden, majestic indeed.
Is it many years you've worked here now?
Yes sir.
Why, I've planted every bush.
Well than you... were here
for the passing of Mrs. Bromfield.
Yes sir.
And I was here when the old gentlemen
took sick and died, Mr. Bromfield.
No I was referring to
Oliver's first wife, Helen.
You knew Helen?
Yes, but not well.
Actually, she didn't care for flowers.
Oh wait, were you at the
villa the night of the accident?
Uh yes, but I was in the garden.
But you do know how
she was killed, don't you?
I only know that I miss her more
each day, she was good to me.
You say she had no interest in flowers?
I would have warned you,
you're wasting your time.
I don't understand.
Oh come on, I know who you really are.
And exactly why you're here.
Ah... you know me huh?
I might have known your
sister would tell you.
But did your sister also tell you,
I'm here at the request of your wife?
Best of luck in your
search for a murderer.
Poke around all you like.
You've got my permission.
And you're not worried
about what I might discover?
You just take your little
lantern and seek out truth.
I found out from Dr. Roberts that your Helen was
in the best of health and wasn't given to fainting.
And so?
Well then how do you explain
her falling over that railing?
As you know there are times when a
married women is a little under the weather.
Are you insinuating that
your wife was with child?
It's possible, only now we'll never know.
Give me the authorization
for a thorough investigation.
If you really want to know the
truth, deny me no way to discover it.
Including the right to order
an exhumation if necessary.
And I guarantee that nothing will get to
the police, that is short of an official inquiry.
I trust you'll keep me informed?
And do nothing without consulting me.
They know I'm a private investigator.
And Oliver, what did he say?
Well, he said I had a free hand,
and offered his theory at how it happened.
Well that Helen suffered a
spell because she was pregnant.
That's not good enough!
No, not at all.
Because your husband was lying.
Lying? How do you mean?
After I left him, I made a few phone calls,
medical ones you might say...
I found that, Helen had
undergone full hysterectomy.
She was barren.
Can I help you?
I was looking for anything
that could compromise me.
What do you fear, in particular?
Ruth has access to this wing,
it would be terrible if she discovered...
Just what did you hope
to discover in my room?
Sarah, I'm frightened.
You'll do more harm than good this way.
Don't worry, nothing is
going to happen to Oliver.
You were talking in your sleep.
You were talking in your sleep.
You were talking in your sleep.
I mustn't sleep, I might betray myself.
I mustn't sleep.
I thought you were in bed.
Ruth tells me you're thinking of leaving.
You mustn't go Oliver.
I won't let you.
I wouldn't be able to bear it Oliver.
I can't stand this house.
I'm obsessed by Helen's death.
I'll end up betraying myself.
You married the wrong girl Oliver.
I suppose it's immaturity.
But she can't make you happy.
Leave me alone!
Take me away Oliver.
I'd follow you anywhere.
Sarah, you mad?
Ah, you and I together...
You've never looked at as a woman.
When you were younger,
I could accept it.
...I'm on fire, you've got to take me.
What are you saying?
And you'll see, I'll cure you of your mental illness.
- Kiss me!
- Stop it Sarah!
Only I can help you.
But you've got to be mine!
Let me go, you're mad!
Why are you so mean?
Do you care nothing about me?
Please see me as a woman.
You forget, you're my father's widow.
Your father's been dead a long time now.
Andi consider you as
part of my inheritance.
Where's Oliver? He left
very early this morning.
Why are you asking me?
You're his wife.
Don't worry, it's a habit of his to walk
in the woods early in the morning.
I ought to know his ways, you see
I came here when he was 14.
Jenny... I want to speak to you.
- I couldn't care less.
- I said I want to speak to you.
Your uncle, breakfasting in bed?
Still asleep, probably tired from his trip.
I wish he could stay awhile,
you're both alike in a way.
I'm going to wake him, he is leaving today.
We've had so little time.
Gone to town for something
urgent, will return soon.
What are you doing in my room?
I demand an explanation Jenny!
Poor Oliver, you're afraid you're compromised.
In reference to what Jenny?
To Helen's death.
You know that was an accident,
what's this all about?
It's about the real truth of it.
- Possibly somebody wanted her dead...
- Are you insinuating...
...that I did it?
It's not an accusation.
You might have done it and you
don't recall, you were so drunk.
You know I too have been thinking,
it could have been Sarah or you.
And I could easily furnish the motives.
Since you were a child, you've been
torturing defenseless creatures.
Absolutely nothing you did could surprise me.
It's the curse of the Bromfields.
Your calling me insane is like the pot calling
the kettle black. Your brain is soaked in alcohol.
Just what do you intend to do?
- I intend to prove that Helen was murdered.
- Then how will you feel?
It will give me the greatest
satisfaction in all my life.
Finish cleaning later Clara,
I want to use the bath.
What is it Clara?
Anybody'd think you'd seen a ghost.
Excuse me sir.
I've decided to go.
I mean I'll miss you and
working here and all. But...
Clara, you've been here
since you were a child.
And, isn't this very sudden?
Did you have an argument
with Mrs. Ruth?
No, no, not all!
She's just great!
Mrs. Ruth has been real good to me.
But, well... I've just got
to go Mr. Oliver.
Tell me...
...what your reasons are.
I'm sure we can find a solution.
Well, since your first
wife was found dead.
A lot of very strange things
have happened here.
What are you driving at?
The night of the accident,
where were you?
I was checking the dining room.
I wanted to make sure I put out the lights.
Clara, what did you see?
Tell me!
I warn you Clara!
You'd better start talking Clara.
Or I swear I'll drag it out of you.
Yes I'll... be right there Ms. Jenny.
The water isn't hot enough.
Mind going below and checking the heater?
Right away.
What's this? You'd better
attend to your errands.
Yes, right away!
Oh Mrs. Ruth, I've got to go into
town, can I get anything for you?
I'll go with you, wait in the garage.
Something's upset you.
What is it?
Poor Ruth, your nerves are shot.
Damn this house it's
affected even you.
Bothered still by that key episode?
No... why don't... why don't
we go for a drive?
Well, there's my car.
No, I'd rather drive,
your car is too big.
Alright, whatever you like.
Sorry, it's not here.
But it was!
There's nothing strange.
Clara uses it frequently to go
shopping, I bet she has it.
We'll use the Rolls.
I feel ill.
I think I'll rest.
As you wish.
Remember what we
discussed the other day.
Leaving here.
Pack your bags and we'll
get out of here immediately.
- But Oliver...
- Don't argue.
A place with just us two.
I'll wait in the library, there's some
important documents I want to get.
Please, homicide section, police. I...
Why did you do it Sarah?
...wanted you... much, my Oliver.